Connect was my word for 2017. And 2017 was one heck of a year for connection.
I chose “connect” for many reasons and one of them was because towards the end of 2016, I felt a little like an astronaut free in outer space, wandering through this new life I found myself in and not sure what to do. Moving to Seattle but still working out of Kansas City, knowing no one but Jake, this city might as well have been outer space. And it wasn’t very easy for me in the beginning, but then it turned a new year and I made “connect” my word. And I applied it everywhere – in my community, towards getting a new job, at yoga – physically forcing myself to connect to my mat, with Jake, with making new friends. And things started happening. In February I randomly connected with someone who had my dream job in waiting for me, and a week after taking the job Jake took me up to a waterfall and put a ring on my finger. What bigger sign of connection could I get?
2017 was definitely one for the books. We had so many of our friends and family out to visit. We explored our new home constantly and went on so many great hikes and trips. Like Big Sur for Jake’s marathon, then running a marathon together in August, our bachelor and bachelorette parties in Vegas and New Orleans, Christina Lake BC, Portland, Chicago, and I went to Philly and got to explore with a good friend there, as well as Breckenridge, Denver three times, and Keystone, Colorado. We got ENGAGED! (Wish seems like it was just yesterday.) We also both started new jobs, Jake changed departments and is in a position he absolutely loves, and I started with my new company and got to have so many great experiences like planning our first user conference. Two of our best friends had twin baby girls! Our engagement party in my hometown was one of the best days of my life. We got Porter the dog! Who is the best rescue dog, ever. Like. Ever. We can’t imagine life without Porter now.
My mom came out to visit and we did a meal in the Space Needle, went to the San Juan Islands and stayed at the historic Roche Harbor Resort and topped it off by cooking a local seafood feast we bought at Pike Market. We met new friends. I turned 30. Our good friend Rob moved to Ballard (our neighborhood we are obsessed with) from Chicago with his dog Lindy Lou. We hosted Thanksgiving and Christmas Eve with friends at our house and we had our first Christmas with just us, and to top it off it was a white Christmas. And we hiked and/or camped the following places:
Wallace Falls (where we got engaged!), Bridal Falls, Barclay Lake, North Cascades National Park, Scorpion Mountain, Summit Lake, The Gorge, Jakel’s Lagoon in the San Juans, Granite Mountain, Kamikaze Falls, Heather Lake, Rattlesnake Ledge, Joan Lake, and Jake went winter camping in Olympic National Park.
We spent 2017 in awe of how lucky we are, and it went by so quickly. I didn’t post near as much as I’d have liked and there were things on my to-do lists that I didn’t get to. There were silly arguments that go along with learning to live with someone in a new place I wish I could take back, and there are days when I wish I would have done more. But on the last day of 2017, really looking back at what a killer year it was, I’m over those shortcomings and looking forward to 2018. 2018 means new goals, a new word, and a new last name for me 🙂 Along with big goals, we decided to set two different intentions every month: one thing to take away and one thing to add value. I also have a goal to do 30 hikes in my 30th year. And exactly one day from today we fly to Hawaii with some of our closest friends and family to get married, then are off to New Zealand for our honeymoon. So many things to be thankful for in 2017 and so many good things to look forward to in 2018.
2017 started off a little rocky and it felt like everyone was a little unsure of where it was going to go. But now on the last day, sitting in the sunshine after a hike near the ocean, I’m not scared of being 30, closing out 2017, or going into a new year. I feel as connected as possible. And that’s a great feeling. Here’s to all the places we will roam in 2018.
Happy New Year’s Eve!
Cheers to 2017!